Our expert says:
Divorce support expert
Your child has the right to see her father and her father has a right to see her. However, you mention serious abuse and this would need to be addressed. Was it physical abuse? and did he abuse his child as well? According to the extent of the abuse it may be required that he has supervised visitation but under the circumstances do you want to confuse your daughter about who her father is. Whether he takes responsibility or not for her and whether he is consistent or not he is her father and 50% of her biology and identity. As she grows she will be able to make up her own mind about her relationship with him but if you deny her father you are inevitably condemning that part of her. It's great if she has a role model she can look up to, but keep both relationship clear and separate. You are obviously the unconditionally caring parent and you will have to brave a challenge with her father wanting to be part of her life, but rather be grateful for that. Engage in this possibility as a possible long term plan and exploring a civil co-parenting relationship will be best for all the parties concerned. You may want to explore some co-parenting coaching to help you into this new role.
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